Review Blog

Dec 16 2010

Cat among the pigeons by Julia Golding

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Egmont, 2010. ISBN 978 1 405237595.
(Ages 11+) Historical, Recommended. Cat Royal, an orphan living in the Theatre Royal in Drury Lane in London's West End at the turn of the nineteenth century brings all her skills to bear to try and save her friend, the escaped slave, Pedro. When he is spotted by his former owner, it seems all is lost for Pedro and his opening night performance in Shakespeare's The Tempest, where he is to play Ariel. But Cat draws in her friends and sends out pamphlets, enlisting the help of the Abolitionists, a group dedicated to freeing all slaves. Already they have been able to prevent slaves being taken out of England and it is only a matter of time before slavery is abolished altogether.
A courageous heroine, Cat fights for her friend's freedom, and the background of the theatre creates a fascinating backdrop to the events. This, the second in the series about Cat, will enthrall upper primary and lower secondary readers looking for a story which is full of adventure, exciting and set in a time rarely written about in children's literature. The intrigue behind the freeing of the slaves is fascinating, and gives another layer of interest to an already packed story.
Mark Knight

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